This Week in Chemical History
Week 18: April 30 – May 6 (Archive)
- Joseph J. Thomson announced discovery of the electron as a body smaller than and a constituent of all atoms in 1897.
- Albert Ghiorso et al. announced the discovery of mendelevium (Md, 101) based on work done at University of California, Berkeley, in 1955.
- Paracelsus, born 1493, founded a new school of chemistry, iatrochemistry (application of chemistry to medicine); believed four elements (air, water, earth, and fire) present in substances as three principles—mercury (volatility and fusibility), sulfur (inflammability), and salt (incombustibility); developed cure for St. Vitus disease.
- Alexander W. Williamson, born 1824, researcher on alcohols and ethers; first to suggest intermediate compound theory of catalysis; synthesized ethylene glycol.
- BF Goodrich Co. incorporated in 1912.
- Thomas L. Willson accidentally discovered electric-arc process for preparing calcium carbide (reacts with water to form acetylene) while searching for economical process to make aluminum, in 1892.
- George Claude Pimentel, born 1922, researched the development of chemical lasers, matrix isolation techniques and rapid scan infrared spectroscopy.
- Wilbur O. Atwater, born 1844, co inventor of the Atwater-Rosa-Benedict respiration calorimeter.
- Frank A. Gooch, born 1852, developed filter crucible, electrolytic estimations of metals, and distillations for estimating boric acid.
- Herman F. Mark, born 1895, pioneer in polymer chemistry; developed process for production of styrene from ethybenzene.
- Louis J. Thenard, born 1777, researcher on chlorine and alkali metals; discovered hydrogen peroxide, potassium, sodium peroxides, and Thenard's blue (used in coloring porcelain); showed caustic soda and potash contained hydrogen and oxygen.
- Arthur A. Blanchard, born 1876, researcher on metal carbonyls and other inorganic compounds.
- John W. Draper, born 1811, first American Chemical Society president; pioneer in photography; improved upon Daguerre's process.
- Proctor & Gamble Co. incorporated in 1905.
- Albert Ghiorso et al. announced the discovery of nobelium (No, 102) based on work done at University of California, Berkeley in 1958.
- Jean Senebier, born 1742, showed green plants in light converted "fixed air" (carbon dioxide) to "dephlogisticated air" (oxygen).
- Julius B. Cohen, born 1859, researcher on laws of aromatic substitutions and optical activity.
- Richard B. Moore, born 1871, advocated use of helium for balloons and dirigibles; supervised production of radium salts in the U. S.
- F. Victor Grignard, born 1871, developed magnesium reagent used in organic chemistry; Nobel Prize in Chemistry (1912).